A Death ray is a certain type of beam attack wielding magic that will instantly slay creatures hit by it, unless they are resistant. Both the PC and creatures are capable of using death rays in combat.

Death Ray used by the PC[]

The player's character may cast death rays in one of two ways: using the spellbook of Death Ray to learn and cast the spell himself, or use a wand of death. The death ray behaves just as your regular bolt spell, though with a significantly shorter range in comparison. This is just as well, since death rays will bounce off walls and can bounce back onto the player.

There are factors that limit the actual use of death rays in combat, as potent as they may be:

  • The spell is rather expensive to cast in terms of PP.
  • It is possible for monsters to shrug death rays off, like other bolt spells.
  • Many of the foes you'd most like it to work against, i.e. orb guardians, other bosses, and end-game creatures, are immune altogether. A complete list of monsters immune to PC death rays can be found here.
  • Mistakes can kill the PC himself (though that is true for other bolt spells as well).

That said, the power of this spell can come in handy against certain vulnerable monsters. For example, killer bugs die instantly to death ray, despite their ability to frequently shrug off damaging bolt spells. It can also be useful against animated trees and fungoids after killing too many of them

Death Ray used by monsters[]

A limited number of monsters and NPCs are capable of casting what is described as a death ray. One can only be fired in a straight line (similar to Ancient Chaos Wyrm's energy blasts), and is described as "an energy bolt slicing through your body!". These attacks are very likely to instantly kill the PC unless he is somehow resistant to death rays; even if the death ray is not fatal, the attack will still deal around 100 to 150 damage. Alertness will help in avoiding the rays, but is not something to be relied on.

There are a few items that offer death ray resistance:

Tome of donors might provide death ray resistance through its effects.

Having resistance from more than one source will not further reduce the damage. As death rays travel in straight lines, it is possible to avoid them by carefully controlling the PC's and monster's movements. This strategy is very risky, as unpredicted events or a mistake can cause immediate death.

This is a list of monsters known to have death rays among their repertoires: